On October 27th, the University Athletic Association (UAA), home of some of the top swim teams in Division III, announced that it will be canceling all conference-specific competition and championships for winter sports during the 2020-21 season. At the 2019 DIII NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships four members of the conference placed inside the top-20 on both the men’s and women’s sides, including the 10-time defending women’s NCAA champions Emory.
Members of the UAA
- New York
- Washington (MO)
- Case Western
- Carnegie Mellon
The UAA’s announcement applies to all winter sports including, basketball, swimming and diving, indoor track and field, and wrestling. Member institutions may determine if there is any currently scheduled contests that they will still be able to compete in.
Faram Jahanian, the President of Carnegie Mellon University and Chair of the UAA President’s Council said that:
“I am grateful to the athletics directors from across the UAA’s eight-member schools and UAA Executive Vice President Dick Rasmussen for their commitment and dedication over the past several months to consider how best to support our scholar-athletes. Our athletics programs bring such vitality and school spirit to our communities. While it is very disappointing to contemplate another season without UAA competition, our commitment to student health and safety is at odds with a conference schedule that would require travel at significant distances. We look forward to a return to play within the UAA as soon as we can, and I am confident that we will be stronger than ever when we can once again compete.”
While the entire conference announced they wouldn’t be holding formal conference competition, individual member schools have also begun announcing they will not be competing this winter. While the conference announcement will still allow schools to take part in competition if they chose, Emory has announced that the school’s winter sports will not be competing. Currently, the university is working to find ways to allow intercollegiate sports to train on campus.
Emory was the 2019 women’s NCAA champion and finished as the runner up on the men’s side.
Joining Emory in announcing the cancellation of winter sports is New York University (NYU). The school said that, while it won’t be allowing its athletes to travel or compete this season, it will be providing them with opportunities to train during the spring semester, assuming it can be done within public health guidelines.
In 2019 NYU’s women took 5th at the NCAA Championships while the school’s men took 28th.
Other members of the conference who have announced that they won’t be competing in winter sports include Case Western and Brandeis. The University of Chicago has also announced that wrestling and basketball will not be competing this season, although they have yet to comment on swimming and diving.
The UAA and its member schools aren’t the first to make this announcement. Last month the NESCAC canceled all conference competitions. Both Amherst and Williams, who are members of the NESCAC and top-10 finishers at the 2019 NCAA Championships, have announced that they will not be competing this year.